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    XR Challenge seeks virtual reality solutions to industry challenges – eight finalist companies compete for prize money of EUR 40,000

    The XR Challenge competition will culminate in an event organised in Tampere on 18–19 September where eight finalist companies will compete for the prize money of EUR 40,000. In the student track, the jury awarded the three best concepts with a EUR 1,000 prize. The open seminar following the final event will unite the companies and enthusiasts operating in and with the VR, AR and MR industries.

    XR Challenge is an international competition for companies and students in the fields of virtual, augmented and mixed reality. The goal of the contest is to find the best solutions for the business needs set by industry companies Fastems, Glaston Corporation and Valmet. A prize of EUR 40,000 will be awarded at the final event held in Tampere on 18–19 September. The finalists competing for the prize money include Etteplan, Softability, Eligo.Studio Oy, Cybercom, Intopalo Oy, Voconaut, Lightshape GmbH & Co. KG and SimLab IT Ltd.

    The challenge competition inspired companies in Finland and abroad

    Through the competition, XR Challenge host companies are seeking product solutions and new ideas suitable for the global market. The challenge contest also attracted interest outside of Finland. The jury, consisting of representatives of the host companies, received for evaluation entries from other Nordic countries, the Baltic countries and Germany in addition to Finland.

    "It was really interesting to review the concepts sent to the competition. We appreciated fresh thoughts and ideas. With the competition, we wanted to find something that we had not come to think ourselves, and we were delighted to find such proposals among the entries”, says Kai Knuutila, Digitalisation Manager at Glaston.

    The companies selected as finalists will have the chance to develop their product ideas up to the demo stage with the support of the host companies.

    “Choosing the finalists was not easy, but we are very proud of these eight companies. This is a good start for developing the solutions further. We already are looking forward to the final event and the XR industry seminar held in September”, says Kimmo Kallioniemi, Vice President, Life Cycle Services, from Fastems.

    The contest also aims to increase the recognition of the Tampere city region as a hub of the manufacturing industry where creative integration of industrial companies and digital innovations can expand.

    “The growth and development of companies operating in Tampere region is our most important focus, and our goal is to have the world’s most innovative industrial companies located in this area. With XR Challenge, we also want to profile ourselves as an attractive site for businesses in the XR industry. We are happy that the challenges of our clients were inspiring and that the competition activated a good number of participants”, says Heini Wallander, Business Advisor for Renewing Industry at Business Tampere.

    The best of the student track were awarded grants

    In addition to companies operating in the industry, XR Challenge also offered students a great opportunity to showcase their skills and provided them with a unique product development experience. Research Director Mika Karaila from Valmet is pleased with the level of the student entries.

    “We managed to get great student entries into the competition and that makes me very happy. We decided to reward three students for good input to the competition, each with a EUR 1,000 prize”, says Karaila.

    In the student track, the EUR 1,000 prizes were claimed for their concepts by Truong-An Pham and Daniel Sumelius from Aalto University and Teemu Tiainen from Karelia University of Applied Sciences.

    Open XR seminar to bring together people interested in the industry in Tampere

    The seminar day on 19 September following the XR final event will bring together industry operators and enthusiasts and offer interesting speakers. Confirmed speakers include, among others, Huawei Chief VR/AR/MR Scientist Steven M. LaValle and Microsoft partner Seppo Honkanen. More speakers will be announced soon, and the complete seminar programme will be published shortly on the event website at

    XR challenge contest is organised by Business Tampere, Leonidas Oy, Virtual Reality Finland, Business Finland, Tampere University of Applied Sciences TAMK and the aforementioned Tampere-based host companies.

    The final event of XR Challenge takes place on 18–19 September 2018 in Mediapolis, Tampere. The seminar on the second event day is open for everyone and free of charge.

    More information:

    Business Advisor Heini Wallander, Business Tampere
    tel. +358 40 735 5177

    Sales Director Harri Lammi, Leonidas Oy
    tel. +358 40 562 0713

    Virtual Reality Finland contact person Harri Lammi
    tel. +358 40 562 0713


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